CHICAGO, IL (BRAIN)—Choosing the right brands and branding mix for your store is essential for success, according to Ian Cross (pictured), outside sales manager for The Hawley Company.
Cross and Steve Hawley, president of The Hawley Company, spoke to The Bicycle Dealers Association of Chicago (BDAC), an NBDA chapter, during its business meeting last month at M&M Cyclery in Mundelein, Illinois. About 20 dealers and six industry sales reps attended the meeting.
After dinner, which was provided by The Hawley Company, Steve Hawley spoke of his personal history in the industry for a few minutes and then introduced Cross, an 11-year sales veteran with The Hawley Company. Cross proceeded with an in-depth seminar designed to help retailers evaluate their store’s brand mix.
According to Cross, a suitable mix of large and small brands increases profitability and aids overall success as a bicycle retailer.
“The use of big widely known brands vs. smaller value brands is a bigger deal than you think,” said Cross. “There are trade-offs with both. There is a correlation between customer attraction and sales margins in your choice of branding. The more brand power and customer attraction a product has, the lower the margin. The less brand power, more value based the product, the higher the margin.”
Cross, who managed several bike shops in Southern California and later in Atlanta, Georgia, said it is important that IBDs strike the right balance between large and small brands.
“If you have a balanced focus, you can use the well-known destination brands as a way of attracting customers,” Cross said. “You can use the value brands to drive your margins up. Your higher overall margins and profits help you retain and get good staff as you can afford to pay for a higher quality staff.”
Dealers who are interested in seeing the PowerPoint presentation Cross created can contact Dennis Burg at DBurg@Hawleyusa.com.